Miami Twp. reveals next stage of park improvements

Jones Fish employee, Mark Isom measures out fish for the pond at Miami View Park pond.

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Jones Fish employee, Mark Isom measures out fish for the pond at Miami View Park pond.

A Dayton-area community is awash in improvements at its parks with more on the way as part of its vision for the future.

Improvements to Miami Twp.’s 34-acre Miami View Park, include the addition Thursday of approximately 1,500 new fish to the park’s newly expanded fishing pond, including largemouth bass, striped bass, bluegill sunfish, carp, redear sunfish, hybrid bluefish, channel catfish, and feeder fish.

Located at 5911 Munger Road at the top of the hill, Miami View Park was established in 1976. For many years, it was “the” park in the township, but it lost numerous features over the past four decades, according to Trustee John Morris.

“The (Emerald) ash borer came through here and took a lot of trees,” Morris said. “We lost amenities like the tennis courts and basketball courts.”

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But this month, trustees approved a resolution asking the township’s administration to find $500,000 to reinvest in the Miami Twp. park system.

“While other communities are stepping back and slowing funding for parks and roads, Miami Twp. is stepping forward and getting things done,” Morris said.

The “rebirth” of the popular park started last year, when the township dug out the park’s pond, which had receded to just three to four feet deep, and made it between 15 to 16 feet deep prior to Thursday’s fish restocking, its first such effort since 2007, according to Rex Gore, Miami Twp.’s parks director.

Typically, ponds of that size are meant to be restocked annually, Gore said.

The township also completed renovations to two ball diamonds at the park, which now gives it fields both there and at Layer Park ready for reservation via contacting the Public Works Department. It also removed and replaced several diseased trees.

Morris said the township will continue to invest “significant resources” into Miami View Park.

That will include re-routing the entryway to allow for easier access to buses and community groups, installing new playsets for children 5 to 15 years old. It also is considering a state-of-the-art athletic complex that will include outdoor weight training equipment and “American Ninja Warrior”-style activities. Also envisioned for the site is a disc golf course.

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Miami View Park is one of the township’s nine parks, all of which have seen numerous improvements in 2018 and 2019. That includes replacing play equipment, repaving parking areas, replacing basketball courts, cooking grills and benches.

Improvements for this year and beyond include:

⋅ implementing a reforesting program at all parks by planting native and hardy tree species to restore natural areas and provide shade for park visitors

⋅ renovating and adding park shelters to be available for rental

⋅ replacing park system entry signage

⋅ fully staffing the Miami Twp. parks department, which eliminates the need for bidding turf maintenance services to local contractors. For many decades prior to 2010, the township performed all its own park maintenance tasks.

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